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What's for Dinner #263. "Can I hear him yet?" [through December 30, 2013]

Let the feasting commence.

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  1. So, we kick off with a classic potted shrimps.

    Followed by a gammon joint (that will also keep us in cold cuts for days). It'll be boiled, smothered with mustard, drizzled with something sweet (sugar, honey or maple syrup) and then finished in the oven

    Alongside, braised red cabbage - cooked in the usual north European style but I've used cranberries instead of the traditional apple. Mrs H will be doing her "cheats fondant potato", which is an oven braise in stock and some butter.

    Then some local cheese - we have Blackstick's Blue, Bourne's Cheshire and Leagram's organic tasty Lancashire. Traditional accompaniments - there's apple, celery and fruitcake. The cake, which is the first one I've ever made, is lovely - pretty much this recipe - http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/ty...

    And then on to dessert - prosecco & pomegranate jelly. Pom seeds fill about two thirds of a martini glass and it's topped up with a prosecco & gelatine leaf mix. It'll take a few hours to set in the fridge.

    Have a great Xmas, folks.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Harters

      A very merry Christmas, Harters! Looks like you've got the feasting down pat!

      1. re: Harters

        Let us know how the fruitcake turns out. I'm a very big fruitcake fan.

        1. re: gini

          Oh, the fruitcake is lovely (although it sank a bit in the middle). I made it a couple of days back and keep nibbling at it.

        2. re: Harters

          Dinner was nice. Although the dessert just didnt work. As regular readers will know I don't drink alcohol but am fine with booze in things, so I thought I'd be OK with this. But there was a very pronounced alcohol flavour that I only took a couple of mouthfuls of. Mrs H also left hers saying she found it bitter, as well as strong. She was more disappointed than me as she likes prosecco as an aperitif. Waste of good wine and lovely ripe poms. You can't win 'em all.

          1. re: Harters

            Bummer, man. Glad the rest was pleasing to the good ol' tasty-buds, tho.

        3. Up early to get the dough started for the christmas day cinnamon rolls and to get the goose (geese?) breasts out of the freezer.

          Breakfast will be pretty light today as the serious eating begins mid afternoon with heavy apps and cocktails. So excited to have the time to send with friends and family today.

          I am also looking forward to reading about (and seeing pics of) all the great eating you guys will be doing too.

          2 Replies
          1. re: foodieX2

            do you have a cinnamon roll recipe to share? I like them on occasion if not too overwhelmingly sweet, and am looking for a good recipe. Enjoy your family.

            1. re: fldhkybnva

              I use the one from my bread machine book, I use a lot less sugar but more butter and cinnamon. They are wonderful!

          2. It's just my husband and I at home tonight. I wanted to do a riff on the old Italian 7 Fishes dinner... so it will be homemade New England Clam Chowder, Lobster Cocktail, and Linguine with White Clam Sauce. The first two recipes come from the Grand Central Oyster Bar cookbook and the 3rd comes from my brain. If he wants dessert, my husband can have some of the carrot cake left over from his birthday yesterday.

            1. Bacon bacon bacon. Needed some bacon fat for the beef tonight so had to fry some up for breakfast. Off to a good start. Merry Christmas!

              1 Reply
              1. re: Berheenia

                Oh, poor you *having* to fry up some bacon! LOL

              2. Being a Jew on Christmas is a great treat for me. We have a mandatory day off and I have no commitments! Today I shall spend 4 hours at the spa getting various treatments and being pampered. Then tonight we'll go to a small plates Italian restaurant for their version of Festa dei Sette Pesche. I can't wait!

                Last night I had a classic blue cheese wedge with crispy bacon, red onion, and cherry tomatoes.

                3 Replies
                1. re: gini

                  lol gini. That reminds me of Jerry Seinfeld saying that Christmas for him is a great day full of Chinese food and a movie.

                  Chinese food/movie.... Italian food/spa - same thing!

                  Have a great time.

                  1. re: gini

                    Gini- have you seen this? My cousin's on my dads side are all jewish and this makes the rounds on their FB pages every year.

                    (and can I tell you the girls all do the spa thing together every year too?? Love it!)


                    1. re: foodieX2

                      How have I never seen that? Thank you for sharing!

                  2. tonight is easy dinner: i'm working at the mall until after 6, so the DH and the kids are on their own. my sweetheart is taking care of SO MUCH to get the house ready for this christmas I could care less about tonight's menu: i just want a stress-free house! We decided he's just going to make enhanced mac & cheese: TJ's diner style mac & cheese, browned ground chicken, and salsa with some extra mexican seasoning. The kids all love it, and he can easily pull it off along with all his other jobs today.

                    we can all enjoy a cup of cocoa together tonight (and a chance to breathe!) after I finally get home from the craziness.

                    1. Last night we had Sicilian spaghetti and meatballs from the thread about finding a missing meatball recipe. Tonight is crown roast with roasted potatoes, carrots (please don't be "baby" carrots or al dente), salad, baked stuffed shrimp, and dinner rolls.

                      Apps include blue cheese and fig savory crackers, pigs in a blanket, veg tray with dill dip.

                      Christmas "lunch" will likely be turkey and all the Thanksgiving usuals.

                      Dinner tomorrow is one rib of standing rib roast, potatoes, some kind of broccoli side dish and Yorkshire pudding.

                      Thursday we are going out for Turkish food.

                      Friday will be a big Italian dinner at my uncles's house, chicken Marsala, spaghetti carbonara, maybe some pizzas from his authentic pizza oven he built in the backyard.

                      Saturday is at my Aunt's and we usually have pork.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: melpy

                        ...what I wouldn't do for a pizza oven in our backyard... (wishful thinking)

                      2. I'm jealous of all your decadent holiday meals, folks.

                        Tonight I'm repurposing the pork tenderloin leftovers. I'm thinking about shaving it thinly and folding into crusty rolls with the leftover broccolini and some provolone, running under the broiler til bubbly, and serving with broth for dunking. There's a little bit of asparagus left that may go into a salad with some clementines. Hope to leave the fridge as close to empty as possible before we jump on a plane tomorrow.

                        ETA: And to that end, we must eat the bag of kale in the fridge as well.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                          Kale did not get et. Oh well.

                          Sandwich was a roaring success. Better than the one we had at DeNic's, if I say so myself. I made a jus with chicken broth, a smidge of beef BetterThanBullion, a drizzle of olive oil, whole garlic clove, and bay leaf. Pork was sliced very thin and hotted up with the chopped up broccolini and more red pepper flake, s&p. Piled everything into a good baguette with a little schmear of mayo, topped with provolone, and broiled until toasty and bubbly.

                          I foresee this making a repeat appearance.

                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                            I could inhale that sandwich. It looks soooo good.

                        2. Tonight will be green chili chicken tamales and red chile beef tamales with sauteed kale and chard on the side. Coctel de camarones to start if I can find good avocados today, just regular shrimp cocktail if not.

                          I still have a lot of projects. SIL didn't know until Sunday night if she was coming down and it turns out she is so the cookies that had been taken off the menu have been added back on.... the ones that take the most time and ingredients (but are so delicious.....) so the kitchen will be lively today. The man is home from work so I have both great company and help. :)

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: weezieduzzit

                            Love how you eat chard and kale so much weezie!
                            Usually people look at me like I'm crazy because I love them so much.

                            1. re: acssss

                              We eat whatever there is an abundance of in the garden at the time. :) Plus, we love our greens.

                              1. re: suzigirl

                                Well, if Allie would get off her butt, stop that silly house building nonsense and get back on the Food Shooter I'd be able to send you some.

                            2. Husband is home... boys are home... we all got out of bed late this morning... now husband is making his wonderful pastry cream filled croissants - love them - in addition to his various breads (the smell in our house is intoxicating).
                              I will start the grand meal a bit later: grilled flank steak with baby red potatoes, whole roasted garlic (some of which will be used later to smother over husband's homemade bread for garlic bread), whole roasted onions, whole roasted tomatoes and roasted carrots. Soup will be a minestrone. Four types of breads. And the grand finale: Husband's homemade croissants for dessert.
                              Sangria is already chillin'

                              ...and in the meantime I will read everyone's preparations, and watch the snow fall.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: acssss

                                In the unlikely event that there's leftover roast carrots, I have a suggestion. Mash, add a dollop of harissa, soem garlic and enough olive oil to slacken it to a sort of dipping consistency. It's a Moroccan dish. We eat it with flatbreads but it'll be great with the homemade bread of whatever sort.

                              2. Worked on Christmas Eve for the first time in memory. Quiet day finalising budgets while listening to the whole of the Messiah. Got home for tea, and decided to cut the Christmas cake a day early; it's not a perfect one, the oven is too temperamental, but I just love even an imperfect Christmas cake. Tonight it will be hot smoked salmon with a lemon sauce, and clementines for pudding. We'll kick off with Nigella's Union square cafe nuts, with a sherry.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Londonlinda

                                  We kicked off with a sherry too. We were in NY at the weekend and I thought of Nigella's nuts when we went past Union Square cafe. Must make them over the next few days.

                                2. Tonight will be fondue from Trader Joe's (hope it's good!) with apples, baguette, and steamed broccoli, and crackers with smoked wild salmon and dill cream cheese to start, then a kale, spinach, portabello, goat and blue cheese napoleon for the main. Maybe a salad with satsumas and pecans if I have time. Followed by maple cream tart. Champagne for us and sparkling grape juice for the kids. :)

                                  5 Replies
                                  1. re: loraxc

                                    We like TJ fondue, I buy it a few times a year.

                                    1. re: weezieduzzit

                                      Oh, good! Never tried it, but the kids wanted fondue (it says "fancy" to them) and I didn't really want to fuss with making it.

                                      Was going to add that on Xmas day, I traditionally make pizza for dinner. :) This year it will be field roast sausage all over with artichoke hearts on one half (DD's preference) and red peppers on the other (DS's choice).

                                      1. re: weezieduzzit

                                        Oh..must try that...where is it located at TJs?

                                        1. re: LaLa

                                          It's in the cheese section on the shelf in a tub I think with a black top.

                                      2. re: loraxc

                                        you just gave me an idea for NYE ... we're going away but a seaside town (Capitola, near Santa Cruz) that is not known for it's chow-ness, and our motel has a kitchen... and i have a fondue pot.... BOOM! fondue in the room before we hit the town!

                                      3. Let's see... we got two fat breakfast apple sausages from DiBruno's browning in the pan for a late breakfast, and we'll each have a fried egg to dip the snausages in the runny yolk.

                                        For tonight, we have a few "nibbles" -- Galatoire's Crabmeat Maison will be the main event (and I'm sure we'll have leftovers, I just don't see us eating a lb of crabmeat -- that stuff is rich!); we'll also have buffalo mozzarella drizzled with my *good* Sicilian olive oil & shprinkled with Maldon sea salt & fresh ground pepper and topped with basil chiffonnade. A salad of Belgian endive with tangerines in a peppery, lemony dressing will round things out.

                                        Totally blanked on a special dessert, so maybe we'll pick up some ice cream on our final run to the farmers market/grocery store.

                                        My keyboarder, with whom I've played xmas eve for the last two years, got hired for a solo gig at the same bar (guess they're being cheap this year around), and so my man and I will likely swing by to keep him some company & maybe I'll even do a few songs :-)

                                        The rest of the day will be spent trying to get some much needed work done and watching the cat play. He's been a crazy one these days.

                                        Happy eatings & merry merry, y'all!

                                        5 Replies
                                        1. re: linguafood

                                          Crabmeat "maison."

                                          Whoa. Positively stuffed. That crabmeat is filling!!!

                                          The bufflo mozza was ridiculously creamy and flavorful -- apparently, DiBruno's imports it twice a week from Italy. No wonder then, save for perhaps the budget-friendly price.

                                          Good thing the endive salad was light. Never eating again '-D

                                            1. re: prima

                                              It was, but next time I might try to lighten it up a bit... perhaps sub some crème fraîche for some of the mayo.

                                          1. re: linguafood

                                            I'm loving watching the cat play. Day by day, he seems to grow more and more hyperactive and insane. The sprinting back and forth is quite amusing. He really must have been bit by the holiday bug. The poor tree is putting up a good fight against the attacking paws.

                                          2. Hubby and I are hanging out in our lovely hotel room at The Inn at Saratoga, in Saratoga Springs NY. We're waiting for our sailor son at the Navy Nuclear school up here to get off work so we can meet at his apartment and set up his (surprise) Christmas tree. We brought Mac and cheese from home, a slab of ham, and Italian cookies from Schenectady.

                                            Sailor son gets Christmas day off, so I made beef stroganoff and brought that from Georgia, too. I brought him homemade fruitcake and banana bread and cookies. It's not fancy, but a home cooked meal is what he wanted.

                                            Merry Christmas to all, and Thank you to Ben in the US Navy, and to our son Adam in the National Guard for your service. You make Christmas peaceful and happy for the rest of us.

                                            1. Making a coulibiac tonight, something I've been wanting to make for years.

                                              Merry Xmas, everybody!

                                              16 Replies
                                              1. re: prima

                                                Wow-zah, prima! I had to look that one up, as I'd never heard of it. With salmon, I presume?

                                                  1. re: rjbh20

                                                    Not the prettiest coulibiac, and a shortcut version to use my purchased puff pastry that had thawed.

                                                    This one had a leek risotto layer, rather than plain rice.

                                                    1. re: prima

                                                      It looks and sounds fantastic. Just wow.

                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                              Thanks, linguafood :) Hope you're having a nice Xmas Eve. :)

                                                        1. re: prima

                                                          It looks great! Is there a photo of the layers?

                                                          1. re: helen_m

                                                            Here's a photo of the leftovers. I used several pieces of salmon instead of a long fillet, it would be more photogenic with a long fillet. I served it with a dill and sour cream sauce.

                                                            1. re: prima

                                                              I Googled that. It looks so delicious and luxurious.

                                                                    1. re: suzigirl


                                                                      I am having a cocktail for dessert:

                                                                      2 oz. gin (Smooth Ambler, in this case)
                                                                      .75 oz. fresh-squeezed Meyer lemon juice (leftover from my cran-limoncello making)
                                                                      .75 simple syrup
                                                                      2 dashes lavender bitters

                                                                      Shake and strain.

                                                                      1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                        Oh my. That sounds really refreshing. Enjoy.

                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                          Couldn't resist throwing in a couple boozy spiced cherries. Merry Christmas, suze. Have a drink w/ me? :-D

                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                            Absolutely. I am actually having a vodka with Simply Lime limeade. Cheers and Merry Christmas Christina

                                                                              1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                I decided one more was in order (before our 7am flight...makes perfect sense, eh?):


                                                                                But w/ only 2 oz. rye and 3/4 ea. of the other two.

                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                  That one also sounds delicious. I like the less sweet twist on the Manhattan. Saude!

                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                              Sorta, but it has its own name---The Fitzgerald (but typically with Angostura rather than lavender). I love the Aviation, too. I thought the floral and lemon would pair nicely together.

                                                                            2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                              That sounds like my kind of drink. Lemon and lavender are a marriage made in heaven.

                                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                You are very talented - I have to order my cocktails down after the first one - I end up gesturing wildly with all subsequent martini glasses and spilling liquor everywhere. Well done.

                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                  Cran-limoncello you say? Please, tell me more. =P

                                                                                  I've been making limoncello for a couple years now, and was thinking about experimenting with different fruits.

                                                                                  1. re: Firenzilla

                                                                                    I haven't tried it yet (it's infusing in fridge while we are out of town), but here's what I did:

                                                                                    I still need to strain and add simple syrup and lemon juice.

                                                                              1. Merry Christmas Eve! I missed you all very much! Hopefully, I'll be back for a while. I got back from my parents' house Sunday and have been in a daze since the funeral mostly trying to get through the work day and actually get something done so I just realized it's Christmas Eve. Months ago I had big plans for the holiday but didn't leave myself much time to follow through since I completely forgot about it. I woke up surprisingly in the spirit and decided that while the holidays are not what I expected this year, Mom Mom would definitely not want me to sit home and pout. I'm on call tomorrow so will be home alone with Take so no big plans but wanted to make it special for both of us. My mother kicked off the holiday fun by surprising me today with a visit. She insisted that I have presents to open on Christmas and drove 2 hours just to bring them to me even though I had to go right back to work after her visit. At first, I was frustrated that she went to such lengths, but soon realized how great she is to try to make my holiday special at these very emotional times. And, she was right, it really feels like Christmas now.

                                                                                I ran to the store with the last few hours of shopping time left and grabbed a few things for the next few days. Nothing special but all comfort food that will certain make for a fabulous holiday. The kitten has been running amok all day so I think he knows something is up :)

                                                                                Christmas Eve dinner tonight will be roasted duck breast with sauteed spinach.

                                                                                I originally planned a turkey for Christmas, but without time to plan I decided a roast chicken would be suitable. Zuni bird is currently "brining" in the fridge and will be served with a mushroom herb sherry pan gravy, roasted potatoes red potatoes lathered with the duck fat from tonight's dinner and green beans sauteed in olive oil and garlic. Day of appetizers will include scallops wrapped in bacon, deviled eggs and a salami, cheese, fruit platter.

                                                                                Fingers crossed for some genuine enjoyment of my favorite time of year. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday as well.

                                                                                16 Replies
                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                  Moms know just what to do, don't they? Merry Christmas fldhkybnva and little 'take.

                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                    I'll take roasted chicken over roasted turkey any day. Enjoy it!

                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                      So glad that you are here and have the holiday spirit. Both the duck and the Zuni chicken sound great. And duck fat roasted potatoes, oh my! What a treat to get a visit from your mom. Have a great holiday.

                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                        {{{hugs to you, fieldhawk}}} And Moms are extra-special like that. After the last few days spent shuttling my Mom around, I'm fully aware of that. Treasure that she did that for you.

                                                                                        1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                          Thanks. While she has her own way which I don't always immediately agree with and naturally sometimes challenge, she only means the best. Bless your heart for shuttling Mom around. My mom is severely physically disabled and she depends on my very small family for nearly everything. My grandmother literally checked on her three times a day and now that's she's gone I think my mom has a real fear that she will not be looked after. I'm not sure I can fulfill the role of Mom Mom but I'm doing my best to keep track of all of her care and make sure that things are being done appropriately for her. You're a great role model of a devoted daughter.

                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                            Sweetie, you don't have to fulfill Mom Mom's role. You just have to be you. Your mother will appreciate anything and everything you can do for her.

                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                              Thanks, most mothers are like that, thankfully :)

                                                                                        2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                          Oh my, the duck has set the mood! I've ordered duck occasionally in restaurants but never made it at home. Wow, it was super simple and so delicious. I couldn't resist the duck fat so decided to serve it with mushrooms sauteed in duck fat with thyme and sherry. I found a new meat to love...yay!

                                                                                          I now will watch the cat continue to attempt to find a spot where he can attack the tree without me noticing :)

                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                            That looks fab! I hope my (whole) duck comes out just as lovely today.

                                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                                              Thanks, I think whole duck is on the list to try out next.

                                                                                          2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                            Glad you are back:) Missed your Woody Allen style witty personality:)! I hope the great food you are dining on tonight and tomorrow with your handsome little guy Take will satisfy your soul just a bit:)

                                                                                            1. re: MamasCooking

                                                                                              Thanks! It's still pretty rough for me to pull it together but I'm trying my best to force myself off the couch and get back into my usual routine. Take is currently bunny kicking his favorite catnip-stuffed mouse and I think he's secretly wishing Santa brings him a real mouse :)

                                                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                Enjoy that kitten:) He will help you feel better and get through this. They are all about love and hilarious behaviors.

                                                                                                1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                  I agree. Last week, I tried the Keller method and it gave Zuni a run for her money but she still reigns supreme.

                                                                                              1. I am keeping it simple tonight. I have loved reading all the wonderful eating (feasting) going on. As for me prepping for the holidays meant baking my britches off today. Window pane cookies, peanutbutter blossoms and butterscotch dipped pretzel rods drizzled with white chocolate. They will be boxed in the boxes I got for fifty cents on clearance last year. Dinner is going to be simple to prepare for tomorrows dinner. I can't feast like most people sadly. Tonight is a spinach, bacon , grape tomatoes and blue cheese salad with a plain baked potato with butter and ranch for me, butter, bacon, sour cream, cheddar and diced ham for the man. It has been alot of bad news here as of late on WFD. Here is to hoping all of those diners and the rest of us a very special christmas. Happy holidays everybody.

                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                  Wow, I just realized I haven't baked anything all year! I need to remedy this in the next few days. I am with you in hoping that perhaps the WFDers will find some peace this holiday. It's been a rough few weeks for many of us.

                                                                                                  I now know the feeling of not being able to feast like mot people. This afternoon at the store I had to restrain myself from juts loading up the cart with tons of food that in the pats I would have inhaled no problem...well a few belly rubs in between bites, but without much effort or discomfort. Now, I really have to focus on the foods I really like because I just can't push it anymore. It looks like I might have to deal with this for a while but I guess it's good to figure out what you like and go for it :) At the first sign of 3/4 full I just have to stop now to prevent an unfortunate few days of belly pain. I hope you are able to eat some of the yummy stuff that you enjoy this holiday. It seems like you're off to a good start with the loaded tater.

                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                    I only bake at Christmas for my clients and my family. I also need to remedy that.
                                                                                                    It has been a tough time here at WFD but we are a hearty bunch and we will persevere.
                                                                                                    Take care of your tummy and if 3/4 full is all you can take, respect your tummy. It knows best. Our brains and past habits cannot dictate our eating anymore. Our tummy speaker volumes. I got lucky this Christmas. My stomach was on board all day. I haven't attacked since the Sunday after thanksgiving. Woo hooty hoot.. I hope you made it through unscathed also.

                                                                                                    1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                      Woot, I'm so glad to hear you that you were able to enjoy the holiday and it was such a great thing that you spent some time with your neighbor!! I made it through Christmas but I kept it super simple and focused on a few simple dishes, that's it. I actually preferred it that way to be honest and could then nibble on other things around the house. I'm thinking New Year's will be the same. Right now I just need a break but fortunately I have a vacation around the corner (Tuesday, hurry up!!) which usually equals a staycation lounging on the couch catching up much needed sleep and a full spread of carbalicious treats. I was also on vacation when I was sick around Thanksgiving so hopefully it'll be a little better this time and I'll be on the couch by choice and able to spend time cooking and relaxing as planned.

                                                                                                      The tummy sure does rule now and I'm going along with him (hmm, my tummy is a male apparently) and actually while it's frustrating at times I kind of like my new approach to meals. It's like the revelation about eggs without cheese, simple food sometimes is all you need, although the complex stuff is fun too of course. It's interesting how not only our bodies but our tastes change over time.

                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                        I did have a nice time at my neighbors house. I only got teary when I first got there as he had several pics of Rose and Zeke on display. I pulled through and my ham salad and rolls went within an hour.
                                                                                                        Lucky girl to be on a staycation over new years. too bad you are wasting that night sober. I know you don't drink.;-) That's okay. here is to not repeating your last vacay suffering in bed my sweet. Sleep, eat carbs and enjoy.
                                                                                                        Yes, the tummy does rule. We have to listen to our grouchy bellies and give them the respect they command. We are no longer in charge. And if you don't listen it can bite you in the ass, as I am sure you know.
                                                                                                        Happy New Year early.

                                                                                                2. Copying my sister who told me during a phone call that she was taking appetizers to a party tonight. We had an easy cream-cheese (8 oz) chili-bean (1 can) heated dip with tortilla chips before enjoying our simple chicken-salad in "dollar buns" sandwiches. A bit of leafy fresh spinach as a nod to the idea of a vegetable.

                                                                                                  And of course cookies for dessert. We'll leave a couple of those out for Santa later. There's NOTHING yet under the tree for me, so Santa's delivery-work will be crucial.

                                                                                                  1. DIdn't realize we had moved on, as no one had noted "OLD" on the previous thread (at least, it wasn't showing for me). Already 63 comments here? Yikes. Reposting....

                                                                                                    Another day taking Mom to doctor's appts. Dinner tonight was relatively easy - a small shallot, minced with a couple of cremini mushrooms, finely chopped. Both sauteed in some butter, added about a half tsp. of minced fresh thyme, then I added a couple of chicken tenders, seasoned with salt and pepper to the pan. When I flipped the tenders and let them sauté about a minute, I then added 1/3 cup of white wine and let it all simmer for about 5 minutes.

                                                                                                    Served with steamed green beans and some leftover Armenian rice pilaf. With a glass of white wine on the side. :-)

                                                                                                    Prep for the beef tenderloin with cognac cream sauce will be tonight, and then I'll bring everything up to Mom's tomorrow to do the main cooking.

                                                                                                    Wishing all of the WFD Peeps a very merry, happy and safe Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Those of you spending time with family and friends, hug them tight and savor the love and friendship.

                                                                                                    1. We had an old favourite, Moro fish stew with peppers, almonds and saffron. The fish was cod and clams and we ate roast potatoes with a dusting of smoked paprika and a fennel and arugula salad with it.

                                                                                                      I am planning on breaking out the Christmas pudding vodka I've made (to help the wrapping along) and I'm going to spoon the fruit that was flavouring the vodka over ginger ice cream. Happy holidays!

                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                        Happy Christmas, Helen! (Loved the card, btw)

                                                                                                        1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                          wow - that stew hits all the notes for me.

                                                                                                        2. At work tonight so the dinner will be tomorrow!
                                                                                                          Appetizer: Old fashioned asparagus rollups
                                                                                                          Main: Spicy mustard & apricot glazed ham
                                                                                                          Sides: Potato fennel gratin & arugula pomegranate salad
                                                                                                          Dessert: Eggnog panna cotta (using the silk soy nog & a little cream) with a little chocolate sauce.
                                                                                                          Happy Holidays and Happy Eating!

                                                                                                          1. Lobster bisque followed by Belgian endives vinaigrette with Roquefort and toasted walnuts. And the widow made her customary appearance.

                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                Wonderful plating.

                                                                                                                I'm guessing the widow is Veuve Clicqout?

                                                                                                                  1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                    she's a classy, always welcome guest.

                                                                                                                1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                  Bisque sounds amazing. It's 20 degrees here and just seems to keep getting colder.

                                                                                                                2. Last night's dinner was chicken parmesan served with a veggie pasta salad. Pasta again tonight (DF does not like pasta with the exception of mac & cheese) just because I'm gonna load up while I can...this time, four cheese ravioli with beef and veggie sauce. Garlic bread and simple garden salad completed...

                                                                                                                  We're about to make pies and cookies.....

                                                                                                                  1. Deb is snoozing, the dishwasher is humming, I'm kicking back with a vintage port watching car stuff on the plasma.

                                                                                                                    It's been a good day. The line to get into my fishmonger stretched outside the door and snaked up the driveway. The owners hired a seriously good sax player to keep the good folk entertained outside and provided huge amounts of boiled shrimp to put a smile on everyones' face. I pre-ordered and skipped all that line stuff. Order in hand, I made it home in record time.

                                                                                                                    Supper was simple. I shucked a bunch of clams and Deb baked them in the style of Fresco by Scotto. These were the stand-up nibbles. Supper proper began with thinly-sliced smoked salmon on top of greens that were kissed by lemon, oil, salt and capers. We washed the salad down with a quality Chardonnay.

                                                                                                                    Main course was lobster. I boiled the jumbos per Jasper White's timetable. I ripped tails, claws/knuckles from the carcasses and left it up to others to crack. Melted butter and lemon quarters were the only condiment. More Chardonnay.

                                                                                                                    Dessert was a beautiful apple tart from a favorite patisserie. A dollop of vanilla ice cream sealed the deal.

                                                                                                                    I spent a bunch of time field-stripping the remaining lobster pieces parts and reserving shells for bisque. I washed everything but the fancy china/crystal/silver. Deb will deal with that in the morning - she insists.

                                                                                                                    sipping the port...

                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                    1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                      Sounds like a lovely meal. Merry Christmas & enjoy the port.

                                                                                                                      1. oy VEY, what a day....just planned on some nice snacking. started out promising - my local very popular fishmonger, after the 40 minute-long-line, provided me with oysters - kumamotos, kushis and one other i can't remember - as well as uni, littleneck clams, and ahi tuna for sashimi. i'd already purchased some goat brie, more of my new fave Red Fox, Amish Blue, duck rillettes, crackers, smoked salmon... my sister had wasabi, salmon roe, dry seaweed sheets, a couple bottles of bubbly, and 20+ dogs she was boarding. i shucked the 24 oysters myself - very proud of that! we started munching on things, sans bubbly for the moment... oh, and my sister had a dry-brined pork shoulder on the spit roasting away. the Oldster wasn't hungry for lunch by 2:30 p.m., so he took his dog for a walk - one of my most fear-filled times of the day, but he insists on doing it alone - 45 minutes later he comes back and, worst fears realized, tells us he fell. some guy pulled over and helped him up, and he walked home (he was 1/2 a block away from home when he fell.) His legs had given out from under him and there was nothing to hold onto, and his cane didn't hold him up. Landed on his bum and then hit his head on the sidewalk. so we called the dr. - seeing as he's neutropenic right now, it was deemed urgent for him to get checked out STAT to rule out cranial bleeding or some other such horror..... 3 hours later... head is fine, but he has a fractured pelvis! not serious, it's weight-bearing, tho he's pretty sore. he also thinks he lost his glasses in the fall; will have to look for them in the daylight. it could have been much, much worse. i always have him take his cell, and he CALLED ME, but my phone was charging - my phone that perpetually lives IN MY BRA since my mom got sick and i needed to have it on me at all times - was not on me when he called. of course, by then he'd already fallen, but still.

                                                                                                                        in the meantime, while we were at the hospital, my sister says that SHE was at the veterinarian ER - one of her charges bit another dog - pretty badly. thank god we had a friend of hers helping out - she sat with all the other mongrels while we were occupied.

                                                                                                                        got the Oldster home, fed him leftover pasta, gave him a pain pill, and put him to bed.

                                                                                                                        Sister and i finally got to eat some of the lovely pork roast, a bit of bubbly, and a wonderfully delicious jar of mallosol caviar she bought me for xmas! we never get each other xmas gifts, but i shared this with her, so it was all good. very good. and the bubbly was much needed.

                                                                                                                        i need to spend the night here, tho, instead of going home to go out with the BF for a cocktail, as the Oldster needs to be watched, and i'm worried about him walking around in the night.

                                                                                                                        I am ready for 2014 to not be eventful at all.

                                                                                                                        tomorrow, should nothing else go terribly wrong, sichuan take-out. and now, bed time.

                                                                                                                        enjoy, all!

                                                                                                                        11 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                          Oh, mc!
                                                                                                                          Great big hugs to you! What a scary day!
                                                                                                                          You and your sister, your whole family really, are such troopers!
                                                                                                                          Hope you enjoy a peaceful day off today, with more bubbly and good good.
                                                                                                                          And may your father heal quickly!

                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                            That is not a good way to enter the holidays, mc! Glad the Oldster is (mostly) OK. I hope the pain pills help with the pelvis pain. Ouch.

                                                                                                                            But your Christmas Eve Scooby Snacks look amazing (even though I probably wouldn't eat some of it). I hope it and the bubbly washed away the "Bleah!" part of your Christmas Eve Day, and today starts off much better! A very merry Christmas to you and yours!

                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                              Oy vey indeed! A real dog day. Hope things get better today!

                                                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                thanks you guys - he is doing fine, didn't even want a pain pill this a.m., tho you can tell it hurts when he walks. AND, i found his glasses out on the sidewalk where he fell!

                                                                                                                                hope you all are having/will have a great day.

                                                                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                  Glad the morning brought better news and found glasses. Hugs to you! Merry Christmas.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                    Merry Christmas MC. I hope the sun is out in my favorite city in the world (SF) and that you are feasting drinking and laughing. So glad that your Oldster is made of tough material!

                                                                                                                                    1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                      Wow oldster is a strong breed, pelvic fractures can be quite painful. I'm sorry to hear that hasn't been the best of holidays but it sounds like you're making the best of it. Best wishes to you and your family. So glad you found the glasses :)

                                                                                                                                    2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                      Jesus, what a day! Hope today brings less excitement, and more merriment.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                        Oysters, champagne, caviar and DRAMA!

                                                                                                                                        Merry Christmas, mc.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                          back atcha steve. without a titch of drama, what sad little lives we'd lead, no?

                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                            Indeed. Drama adds spice to our lives. Otherwise, they might as well immerse us in a pool of novocaine and be done with us.

                                                                                                                                      2. Cooking Christmas Dinner for my mum today. Roast turkey, roast potatoes, pigs in blankets, sprouts . roast parsnips. That's if I don't go mad before the day is out. She's already tried to provide advice on the turkey cos I'm not doing it correctly apparently.
                                                                                                                                        Still is the season of goodwill.

                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: Paprikaboy

                                                                                                                                          We went to the sister in law's for lunch and basically ate what you're having, Pb.

                                                                                                                                          Classic prawn cocktail to start. Turkey, tatties, sprouts, parsnips, carrots, bread sauce, stuffing, gravy.

                                                                                                                                          There was then a 90 minute to do presents, have smokes, etc before dessert was served. This was not a good idea as, by that time, several of us (me included) felt stuffed. Those who did eat more had either Xmas pudding or Mary Berry's chocolate torte.

                                                                                                                                          SiL did a great job. Even more remarkable as she'd been up most of the night with the shits and her husband decided not to help too much with the cooking, nor to go to bed (he'd worked overnight) - preferring to get pissed instead.

                                                                                                                                          Later this evening, I may fancy something to nibble on. There's ham, turkey, sausage rolls and cheese and enough salad stuff to open a shop. Alongside, there could be pickled walnuts and homemade "Branston Pickle" (internet recipes easily available - nice pickle but Branston it ain't). Oh, and a trifle for afters.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                            What is tatties, if I may ask Harters? Is it some type of potato dish? And, can you tell me about this bread sauce? I'm intrigued by the dishes you have...

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Cherylptw

                                                                                                                                                Tatties - simply Scottish slang for potatoes (not that I'm Scottish)

                                                                                                                                                Bread sauce is a classic - http://www.deliaonline.com/recipes/ty...

                                                                                                                                          2. I'll be heading up to Mom's in a few hours to prepare dinner and open a few small gifties.

                                                                                                                                            Dinner will be relatively simple, since she doesn't have the oven room:

                                                                                                                                            Beef Tenderloin with Cognac Cream Sauce
                                                                                                                                            Roasted baby Yukon Gold potatoes
                                                                                                                                            Steamed and buttered green beans

                                                                                                                                            Dessert will be a small key lime pie I picked up at my local stupidmarket who, despite being a stupidmarket, has some pretty good desserts! Wine for me, a Vodka/tonic for Mom.

                                                                                                                                            Wishing everyone a happy and safe Christmas.

                                                                                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                              I'd eat that "simple" dinner any damn day, Linda.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                The cognac cream sauce sounds divine!

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                    enjoy yo mama, LW. i know she'lll enjoy you!

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                      Stuffed after dinner. It was a perfectly done medium-rare beef tenderloin. (Note to anyone who has a Hannafords near them - their Angus beef tenderloin is *really* good!) The taters didn't come out as well as they should have - stuck to the pan. Could have been the pan; could have been too much oil in the pan. Dunno.

                                                                                                                                                      And as I expected, the key lime pie was pretty darn good (although both Mom and I thought it had too much whipped topping).

                                                                                                                                                      Back to work tomorrow, although I suspect the workload will be light. At least I hope so.

                                                                                                                                                    2. Today is working out just as I hoped. A cycle up to the allotment to make sure it is still there after the storm, harvest the last produce of the year, parsnips which we will have for lunch. The terrine of chicken, pheasant and stuffing which I make every Christmas is in the oven, Christmas pudding simmering, red wine open, veg done....
                                                                                                                                                      Happy Christmas, everyone.

                                                                                                                                                      1. Christmas eve dinner saw the family making ricotta and spinach cappelletti to be served in broth, and dragon dumplings with dipping sauce. Eclectic? Yup. Traditional? Heck no, but it was a lot of fun and very tasty.

                                                                                                                                                        Christmas day is totally traditional. Roast goose, stuffing, gravy, ham and biscuits, sides galore, and a flaming Christmas pudding for dessert. Bubble and squeak for Boxing day is going to be absolute heaven.

                                                                                                                                                        Happy Christmas, everyone!

                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jammy

                                                                                                                                                          wait, what are dragon dumplings?

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gini


                                                                                                                                                            My son is a dumpling fanatic. He found this on youtube and we now make them whenever he has a craving.

                                                                                                                                                            They're also good potstickers the next day, all fried up and crispy.

                                                                                                                                                          2. Southerners often refer to the midday meal as dinner so this should qualify.

                                                                                                                                                            Christmas morning "dinner" of smoked salmon Eggs Benedict with duck fat hash browns. And Champagne, of course.

                                                                                                                                                            Merry Christmas, y'all.

                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                              1. Feast of the Seven fishes report: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/929056 - probably the best one we've had so far. We were so enamored with the fishiness, that we decided to have smoked salmon omelets for breakfast this morning. We'll probably continue the fish song this afternoon with some lobster pizza.

                                                                                                                                                                Hope everyone's celebrations are joyous.

                                                                                                                                                                1. The traditional German side of braised red cabbage has been braised and will be warmed up for dinner, b/c that's how we roll in the fatherland. A coupla slices of maple bacon were chopped up and rendered, an apple & onion were grated and added to the bacon fat. Then the cabbage went on top and everything got mixed up. I found ground cloves in the cabinet, which was quite a happy surprise, as nothing sucks more than biting into a clove. Blech.

                                                                                                                                                                  The ducky caused me a little sturm & drang, as I was torn between the Marcella and the 5-hour duck recipe.

                                                                                                                                                                  I ended up just blow-drying the already fairly dry duck (I'd unpacked it yesterday and let it dry on a rack over night), and could just barely stop my man from taking a picture of little ducky at the kitchen "salon" :-D

                                                                                                                                                                  The skin's been pricked all over, the cavity rubbed with sea salt, coarse ground pepper, crushed garlic and chopped sage, and a bunch of thyme sprigs were shoved in as well for good measure. It's now roasting at 300 for the next 3 hours, after which the temp goes up to 350 for the last hour.

                                                                                                                                                                  Ah, but this is only 4 hours, you say? Well, some trusted 'hounds have indicated that 4 hours is plenty. So there.

                                                                                                                                                                  The fennel salad with bleu cheese & pomegranate can be thrown together rather quickly, so I won't deal with that until later. Pilaf is up in the air, as it might just be enough food already.

                                                                                                                                                                  Had a lovely late xmas "breakfast" of seared salmon belly (which I had cut off of the salmon when I made the gravad lax for tomorrow), duck heart & duck liver. Faboski. Not sure yet what I'll do with the stomach and neck....

                                                                                                                                                                  And now... back to work. Blah.

                                                                                                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                    I bookmarked that gravlax recipe yesterday, I am dying to try it!

                                                                                                                                                                    Enjoy your dinner, sounds wonderful!!!

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                      I can't wait for tomorrow, either!! It's probably ready to get et now, but I'll hold off another day. We got enough food as it is with the crabmeat leftover (like we *need* an appetizer).

                                                                                                                                                                      I will report on the salmon. Dolphinately!! :-)

                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                      I can't wait to hear about the duck! Happy Hplidays! I spent my first few Christmases in Germany and from what my parents tell me, the Germans are serious about Christmas traditions :)

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                        There are a few traditional German xmas dishes: goose is popular, as is carp (!), although you don't see that too often anymore. But braised red cabbage is kinda the go-to veg to go with goose or duck.

                                                                                                                                                                        Another one is to go all cheapo and carefree, like my sis did this xmas: potato salad and wieners. Yep.

                                                                                                                                                                        My mom and I used to mix it up some -- get a variety of seafood salads, maybe some big-ass shrimp or chicken hearts & livers and throw 'em on the table grill. Nibbles all night, then cards till the wee hours of the morning.

                                                                                                                                                                        's all good :-)

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                          Potato slad and wieners, I'm in! You remind me I have a bag of giblets and pondered trying them out for the first time. Usually the chickens I buy are sans giblets so I figured better now than later.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                            +1 on braised red cabbage with goose. It's a good, zingy foil to all that richness.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                            So far, so good. I remembered the piercing every hour, but forgot to turn it the first time i took it out. But it's looking & smelling pretty swell already :-)

                                                                                                                                                                        2. I cooked my first goose today, well at least goose breasts! What a wonderful holiday meal.

                                                                                                                                                                          The breasts were marinated overnight in honey, mustard, lime and lemon juices along with fresh sage. I took them out an hour before cooking, dried them off and wrapped them in bacon. My husband grilled them, giving first a quick sear and then on indirect heat until they reached 130 degrees and the bacon was crisp. They were served with ginger glazed carrots, mixed grains and 2006 AO Cabernet.

                                                                                                                                                                          Merry Merry my friends!

                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. It's our first christmas stateside and without family so we decided to do things exactly how we wanted. We just finished a very late lunch of porchetta with roasted potatoes, carrots, parsnip and parmesan crusted sprouts. I made cranberry sauce as a last minute addition and it really added a lovely sharp contrast and made it feel very christmassy. We opened a delicious bottle of barolo which we're still sipping.

                                                                                                                                                                              There's a mini Heston hidden clementine pudding to have later but I can't contemplate it yet!

                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                  Sounds great Helen. I've got one of those Heston mini puddings too. Still haven't had the room to tackle it.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. El duckarino mucho crispo and the fennel/blue cheese/pomegranate salad. I didn't photograph the red cabbage -- that stuff needs photoshopping '-)

                                                                                                                                                                                  Sadly, we couldn't eat a lot. I forgot how rich duck meat can be. Good thing we didn't make any pilaf!

                                                                                                                                                                                  Re-watching "The Hobbit" now to prepare for the sequel, which we'll likely go see in the near future....

                                                                                                                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood


                                                                                                                                                                                    Duck hash is proof that God loves us.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                      That might well be on the agenda for brunch tomorrow :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                        Duck hash, farm-fresh eggs poached just so and a bottle of bubbly. Mercy.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I just remembered hash requires taters, which unfortunately aren't around. So perhaps I'll just crisp up the skin under the broiler and chop it up with some of the duck meat tomorrow. Fresh eggs are always around, thanks to a friend who has a few hens. And we have maple bacon....

                                                                                                                                                                                          But then there's also the leftover crabmeat..... I am starting to feel overwhelmed with food. Sometimes, I wish we people had 5 stomachs, like cows.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                            Sounds like a classy problem to me.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Crab cakes, crab bisque, Crab Louie salad...

                                                                                                                                                                                            Get some spuds.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Well, the crabmeat already *is* a salad -- Galatoire's crabmeat "Maison". But we're chipping away at it, lump by lump.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Not the worst problem to have in the world, for sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                        I love duck. I never make it (don't ask me why), but I love it! Fennel and pom salad, red cabbage, and duck - sounds like the perfect meal to me!

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Dinner was lovely. First course was lobster bisque pulled from the freezer, warmed on the stovetop, resuscitated with cream and made healthy with large chunks of lobster from last night's meal.

                                                                                                                                                                                        Main course was a three-rib standing roast. The meat was USDA prime. Deb salted the seven-pound roast two days in advance before roasting it in a 325 oven. The result was superb. Potatoes au Gratin and chive carrots were the sides. Blue cheese popovers instead of Yorkshire pudding. We washed it all down with a California Cabernet Sauvignon. Dessert was the last of the apple tart from our favorite patisserie.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I've washed a bunch of dishes tonight and have a few yet to go. Deb will hit the fancy stuff tomorrow. I love Christmas but I'm really glad it only rolls by once a year.

                                                                                                                                                                                        still working on that port...

                                                                                                                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                          That sounds really delish. No pics, man?

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                            Reluctantly, no. It would have been rude.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Sounds lovely...and a lot like what we've been eating these last couple of days!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                              Wow! That sounds fabulous. I am planning a rib roast and dauphinoise for new year and the popovers instead of yorkshires are a genius idea which I might steal.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                                Thank you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                You might want to make a double batch of the popovers, they go fast.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. A delightful dinner with wonderful company. We are indeed fortunate in all the important ways.

                                                                                                                                                                                              A particularly luxurious iteration of saucisson de fruits de mer followed by simple roast prime rib with pommes escalope & garlicky haricots verts. Manifold desserts not shown.

                                                                                                                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                Excellent meal. Is that the new pup?

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  That's Remy Martina, VSOP (very special outstanding puppy).

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Probably one of the *best* dog names ever. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                      +1. Was the color of her coat inspiration for the name?

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Problems posting with my cell phone; will catch up tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. We had shrimp coctail, goat cheese and jam w crax, salad ala Jeruleslum cookbook, crown roast of pork (Melissa Clark), mashed potato, green beans almondine,sour dough rolls, apple sauce, mocha pie, cookies, truffles and coffee

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. "Good King Wenceslas looked out....on the feast of Stephen"

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Now you're talking. A day that's recognised, even by Christians, as a feast. That's gotta give a big green light to we athiests, agnostics and those who are just plain greedy to give the day a good seeing to.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      It's started with the fullish fry-up - sausages, eggs, potatoes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      There's mince pies and fruit cake in case we get peckish before lunch. Lunch is planned as a turkey, stuffing and mango chutney sandwich. Then there's still the mince pies, etc, to see us through the afternoon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      We havnt planned a starter for dinner - which means it'll probably be the smoked salmon that gets noshed - scattering of capers, grind of pepper, squeeze of lemon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'd normally describe the main course as a brown gloop meal from the freezer. But it's one specifically made for today. Beef casserole - shin beef, onions, chestnut mushrooms, cepes, red wine, chestnuts. Not so much a recipe as building it up as I cooked it. Roast potatoes. Steamed cavolo nero.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Then cheese - we have Bourne's Cheshire, Leagram's Lancashire and Blackstick's Blue. All local - made within a 45 minute drive of home. Celery and apple to accompany.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Trifle for dessert.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                        That beef casserole is WAY more than "brown gloop!" Sounds wonderful -e njoy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                          The casserole sounds like an old Josceline Dimbleby recipe my MIL typed up for me, it's actually called Boxing Day beef, so most apt Harters!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                                            It's actually a mix of the Dimbleby recipe and one I saw on the internet. Hers uses chestnut puree and black treacle, neither of which I fancied, and only fresh mushrooms.
                                                                                                                                                                                                            It's in her Christmas Book , which was published by Sainsbury in 1987. I always use her recipe for mince pie pastry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                            What a feast!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Edited to add: Stephen approves.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              It got better. I "discovered" a tiny Christmas pudding in the cupboard that I'd forgotten I'd bought for myself (Jan doesnt like Xmas pud), Had it with brandy sauce. Herself stuck with the trifle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harters


                                                                                                                                                                                                                I like the cheeses, too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. I'm pretty sure MIL has been convinced that Christmas dinner doesn't need to be such a formal stuffy event- this Christmas dinner was far more enjoyable than years past and I have no doubt that a big part of that was the lack of stress from not having to make a huge meal that people make because they think they're supposed to.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            FIL barbequed ribs (it was a gorgeous blue skied 79 degrees,) I brought chipotle scalloped potatoes, MIL did green beans. Everyone enjoyed it and left the table full but not holiday-stuffed. We left them with a rum bundt cake that I made several days back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Total success. What a relief.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I agree! I was sort of forced to keep it simple and it was great!

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. OMG I have eaten so much food. This is what happens when you have 2 families in the same town to visit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                On Christmas Eve, I helped SO's mom make Potica (sort of like a jelly roll, but with a nut filling? Never heard of it til last year) for the first time. She usually buys it. We didn't get the dough rolled out thin enough, so we'll try again next year. She also made a baked chicken dish, broccoli salad, and umm some other stuff I can't remember. I also made my bacon jalapeno cheese ball that people seem to go nuts for.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Christmas Day, we ran back over to SO's moms at 7am to watch his nephews open presents. Winnie came with us, she liked playing in all the paper. Then back to his dad's (where we are staying with the pups) where his stepmom made fried scones (apparently it's a Utah thing, where she's from), that you top with either sweet stuff, like honey, or jam, or eat with cheese and bacon. Both ways were great and I just had some leftover scone bacon cheese sandwiches for breakfast. Then we napped and headed back over to mom's where she had made a cajun smoked turkey (actually I think she bought it), a ham, some other stuff, and SO's favorite, Watergate Salad (blech). Went and saw Anchorman 2, then came back to dad's and went to sleep! Long tiring day.... his folks live across town from each other, but the town is only 23,000 people so across town isn't very far :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Today is a day of relaxation. Might go up to dad's cabin, which is about an hour away from Jackson, but likely we will just veg out... well I have some work to do but it's not so much like work when you can do it in front of a 70" flat screen in the basement in your PJs. I think tonight if we don't go up to the cabin, we will be having a steak dinner at mom's house.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Whew! Everyone else's holiday meals looked great!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Nut roll? I have a friend from upstate NY who makes nut roll - his mom's recipe. Eastern European.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We make that. A Hungarian version called a begli, with either a walnut or a poppyseed filling.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Growing up we just called it nut roll.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rabaja

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      walnuts, and several good glugs of sherry here. I actually made them this year, and my mother cried when she saw them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: tcamp

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yup, this one is made with pecans.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. I managed to have a very peaceful and relaxing holiday. My simple yet classic meal was a true delight! Zuni roast chicken, super crispy rosemary potatoes roasted in duck fat, green beans sauteed in garlic and olive oil with a splash of balsamic vinegar and a lazy gravy from a local restaurant (forgot I didn't have any flour after the stores were closed). It looks like a frozen TV dinner but tasted infinitely better. A lesson in keep it simple, the classics rarely lead you astray. I might have a new approach to holiday meals.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    A Christmas Story played on repeat all day. My mom mentioned it was on, I'd never seen it but will be a new Christmas tradition.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks. I wasn't in a skin mood, but next time I'll gobble that up too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Local whole chickens are on sale here for 79 cents a pound at one of the little independent ethnic markets.Is it twisted that I am euphoric about that? I have to grab one for a Zuni chicken. BTW the chicken on your plate just looks so melt in your mouth tender. Cooking is good therapy. Eating it is even better yeah? :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: MamasCooking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Indeed it was nice to make a proper meal again. The chicken was indeed melt in your mouth tender, Zuni is amazing! I'd be euphoric too! Get thee a chicken, last Zuni of 2013.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We do, I still haven't tried the Marcella Hazan chicken with two lemons, I just can't part with Zuni

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MamasCooking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            While one can use any chicken for the Zuni recipe, the small ones are hard to come by but are the best. I've been buying Mary's air dried ones at WF. Makes a world of difference. Here' the recipe in case you need it.


                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I only use small chickens for the Zuni recipe and also buy the air chilled at Whole Foods. It's the only place I can ever find chickens that are of the right size, I usually use 3.5 lb chickens. This time though I did use a chicken from TJs because it was Christmas Eve and I couldn't make it to Whole Foods before it closed but they also had a good supply of small chickens.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              btw do the air chilled chickens you buy at Whole Foods have giblets? They're always missing and the butcher had no idea why.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. I was gone only one day and so many posts! You've all been very busy (talk about being a true CH!) and everyone's holiday meals look/sound absolutely wonderful. Some serious cooking has been going on around the country!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I am now drinking coffee (we had a very very very late night), eating a bagel spread with Harter's Moroccan mashed roasted carrot dip/ chutney/ sauce/ salad (I don't know what to call it). There were no leftover roasted carrots, but it sounded so interesting that I roasted some more just to make it. I didn't have any harissa, so I made my own. It is wonderful. I love carrots and have a ton in my fridge, so instead of just juicing them constantly or making simple roasted carrots - this is a welcoming change.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thank you Harters!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          As for dinner tonight - I think leftovers will have to suffice. I am just too tired to cook.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Christmas dinner started with a platter of cheese and beef sausages with assorted mustards followed by a salad of fresh spinach and red leaf lettuce with cherry tomatoes, cukes, thinly sliced yellow bell pepper, carrots, roasted red grapes and oven dried procuitto, served with balsamic vinaigrette.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            For the meal, prime rib, grilled baby backs, green bean casserole, mac & cheese, scalloped potatoes and my dinner rolls were passed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Daughter's boyfriend made pecan pie cake and strawberry rhubarb pie; I made sweet potato pie and a sugar free orange walnut cake. Wine flowed and everyone had a good time (there were six of us).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Daughter is VERY lucky; boyfriend loves to cook and she doesn't (I'm not understanding....she's MY child, she's supposed to LIKE to cook just from having my genes but where oh where did I go wrong....lol...) He even bakes from scratch (he made my pie crust for me).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dinner tonight is leftovers...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'm loving the selections of food and produce here, especially the prices. We loaded up at the farmer's market on Christmas eve for about $12.00. I SO am moving here...one day soon. I definately am packing my suitcase with extras when it's time for me to go home....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Dinner is fast and easy tonight: homemade meatballs and sauce pulled out of the freezer over cavatappi pasta and frozen garlic Texas Toast.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              After the last 3 days of fancy stuff, Italian-American comfort food is what I am craving.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Doing almost the same thing but alas I have no more sauce and meatballs in the freezer so I bit the bullet and am making a HUGE batch for dinner and to feed the freezer.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                We'll have it over some boxed ziti along with some homemade focaccia. Figured if I was tied to kitchen I might as well make bread too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It just started to snow here and one radio station is still playing christmas music so I am dragging the holiday out as long as I can.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The last tray is done! I think I made close to 100 meatballs today. They go fast as my son loves them as a quick breakfast or as a snack after school

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That-a is-a spicy-a meat-a-ball-a.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sorry. Couldn't help myself '-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      You-a took-a the words-a right-a outta my mouth-a!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. The gravlax I'm bringing over to the Boxing Day potluck came out faboski. I don't know that the diced lime slices added a lot to the flavor, so I might leave those out next time. I saved a small plate for us, as I am doubtful anything will be left....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My man's truffles are also, once again, incredible. They literally melt in your mouth. Pics later, when they're not sitting in a box for transport.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Have you boxed anyone yet today? :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wow. Just wow. Nicely done Lingua! I can not wait to try my hand at this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It's so damn easy, I don't know why I don't make it more often. Plus you don't have to make a whole side; an 8 oz. or 16 oz. filet would work just as well & would still make a nice app for the famblee :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I know I'll make it more often from now on. Even my man, who's not too fond of salmon (shakes fist) likes it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I need to learn how to make this salmon. Our 8 oz package of 'lox' from Trader Joe's was inhaled Christmas at noon by the four of us..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Do it. I might make it again for our NYE gathering, too. So, so simple -- and as I predicted, it was all snarfed up within the first half hour or so: all 2.5 lbs. of it (so glad I made a little plate for us that we can have as an app tonight!).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Lovely. I may knock this off for New Years day

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'll probably make it again for NYE, but I'll pass on the limes. Just not sure they added much of anything to the flavor.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'd think the acid in the limes would cook the fish & change the texture for the worse. I haven't made this in decades, but when i did I kept it ultra-simple -- great quality salmon, salt, sugar, black pepper & dill. Might have used some ground juniper once.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              As long as the lime doesn't touch the salmon (which is tricky, even with a lot of dill on top), it's ok -- otherwise, you can get a mushy surface. Not good. But really, what's the point of the lime if they won't serve as a flavoring agent?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I think my next gravlax will get a healthy splash of gin before I apply the salt & sugar mix. Salmon & gin are great buddies, especially in a mousse.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This was farmed (!) Atlantic (gasp!) salmon. Worked like a charm. Sometimes, a good prep can elevate the lowliest of ingredients '-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Did you post a recipe above that I missed?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I think it's in the last thread. But you can also just google gravlax and it'll pop up. According to Mr. Humble, it is "the best gravlax recipe". I think the ratio of salt & sugar worked fine, but I'll leave the lime out next time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. I got a new tablet. please forgive my posts while I adjust. thanks to james for the new toy. here is to having an updated tablet and here is to trying to post a pic. here are my peanutbutter blossoms. I made some with Hersheys kisses and some with Butterfinger bells. the bell is in the front.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          tonight is old school tacos, rice and beans.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I am very behind and am trying to catch up. Christmas went swimmingly.i haven't had a holiday go well since I have been sick. I always end up feeling unwell' this year went off without a hitch. yay me

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            A post-Christmas walk on the lighter side. Spicy ramen with leftover sliced BBQ pork cushion meat & hardboiled eggs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Glad to hear no sickness messed with your holiday cheer & eats!! My tummy was acting up a little on xmas eve, but I told it to Cut It Out! That and some beer made it shut up '-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I like how you got your tummy to cooperate. If only that worked for me. I would complain of stomach troubles a lot more. ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. fabulous sichuan food, leftover from last night's christmas take-out dinner - spicy ma la crab with tofu, spicy charred stir-fried cabbage, smoky shoe string potatoes, cold bacon with spicy garlic sauce, fish filet with roasted garlic, 1000 chili fish soup, pork fried rice, and pork chow fun. the restaurant where we ordered all this from was so busy that i had to go order it in person, go home, wait for an hour and a half, and then go back and pick it up! totally worth it. in the meantime, and the only cooking of the evening, i made a quick starter of the littleneck clams from xmas eve - shallots, garlic, fresh squeezed pink grapefruit juice, sherry, thyme, and a little chicken stock. so sweet and delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Yesterday for our farewell brunch I made Eggs Benedict using all Trader Joe's products (except the eggs were local). Thanks to a tip from our own SteveH I broke each egg into a small cup before dropping it into the boiling water. I cheated and used egg rings in a large skillet. The TJ's Canadian bacon, British Muffins and refrigerator hollandaise all made a nice classic dish.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Last night after dropping off the family at Amtrak in Albany, WFD was the Italian pie that never made it to the holiday table. It's a double crust pie of layered Italian meats, cheese and spinach that's sold by the slice locally. I like to heat it up and spoon on a little store bought marinara sauce. We had it with some Trader Joe's "chard of many colors", another almost ran that got edged out by a pound of fresh spinach for the Xmas day meal. There was red wine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That italian pie sounds delicious and my husband would love it. We have small italian speciality store near here but nothing like that there or at least I have never seen it. I am definitely going to ask next time I stop in.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It is available in a chain out here but not in all of their stores. We found it in the Pittsfield Big Y.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. We used up the leftover porchetta last night and had it with braised green lentils and buttered cabbage. Very comforting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Veggie food tonight after all the pig. Black pepper tofu, charred broccoli and steamed rice. I'm looking forward to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. We had our traditional Boxing Day dinner - cold meats, bubble and squeak (made with leftover veg from the day before), chutneys and pickles, followed by the remains of the Christmas pud. Himself said what we both thought "why do we only have bubble a squeak at Christmas - it's great!"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Dinner tonight is repeat of last nights spaghetti, meatballs and garlic bread. It was supposed to sautéed shrimp and broccoli rabe served over angel hair. My husband is taking our son and friend to see Anchorman 2 and then back here for dinner. Shrimp will not fly with the friend so keeping it simple. He also doesn’t get that many family meals so it will be nice to sit around the table and hear all the awful details about the movie, LOL!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Uggghhh. Why oh why did I drink so much last night? And starting at 6 PM, you'd think I'd be done earlier than 2 AM? Gah.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Today is/was a total waste. Huge surprise. Dinner will be the leftover duck meat and crisped up skin, leftover braised red cabbage and another rendition of the fennel slaw. There is also a teensy bit of the crabmeat maison left, which we'll share as an app along with the little portion of gravlax I saved for us.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I have a late night gig (another reason I shouldn't have been misbehavin' yesterday, dangit!), and my bandmates will likely expect me to sit in with their other band, which plays on the earlier side. Not sure I have that in me.... still in recovery mode.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Tomorrow will hopefully be a helluvalot more productive.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Cuz tis the season!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          hope it was fun, and that you feel mo betta fast.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yeah. But at my advanced age, extreme party nights like this one need to be planned in advance, with keeping in mind the following day(s).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Gettin' old sux.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You said it. marathon partying is a young mans/gals game. I cannot hang with the big dogs like I used to.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                And at my age I wake up feeling hung over like that without even touching a drop of the stuff:) So there is that to look forward to.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: MamasCooking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Can't. Hardly. Wait.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ugh. Still not particularly motivated to be spending the next three hours in a smoky bar entertaining folks. I never learn.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Out. You know where.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mango martinis.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            A few tapas.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            A couple of good friends.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Good way to end the year. Even though the year isn't over yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              All sounds great, save for the mango "martinis". Those two words should never ever appear in the same sentence :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yeah. I cringed at that one, too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Still, 5 out of 6 ain't bad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I know. I don't drink martinis - vodka *or* gin. But that's what they're called, and that's what my friend likes, so that's what gets written. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. The last of the cookies went to the last client. She requested all peanut butter blossoms.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                tonight I am craving breakfast. James is a tough sell on brekkie for dinner so it must include chicken fried steak to make it more dinner like. chicken fried steak, cream gravy, over medium eggs, cheddar grits and French toast that we will share. I usually like toast with fried eggs but if I have grits to eat with the runny yolks I will be happy. Plus, I get sweet and salty together. Winner

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  You're hitting all the right notes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks. Lets hope so. The man isn't a big breakfast guy in general. Sometimes I just need an egg.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Even though our food choices through the holiday were not particularly heavy I feel the need to lighten things up, must be the gorgeous warm weather. Dinner will be mahi mahi (simply pan fried with butter and lemon,) an absolute ton of greens (kale and chards,) that I just picked from the garden... got kind of carried away.... and some roasted baby beets (thank you for doing the messy part for me, Trader Joe's.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wine will be had after dinner while looking over business paperwork. I think I need to make some more business purchases over the next couple of days. Its looking like I need some more deductions... fast!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The baby beets got turned into a beet, avocado, pink grapefruit, mandarin, mango, dill salsa/ salad. Bright, beautiful and delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Lobster rolls are up tonight, maybe some chips on the side. Beer for me, wine for Deb. It's nice to throttle back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cheers, y'all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There was a remarkably generous amount of lobster left from the saucisson & bisque. Turned into lobster rolls & hoovered down by the young athlete while I was at the office...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. It's been a rough week getting back into the world, but I'm kicking myself back into my usual habits so dinner tonight is steak and mushrooms. Hanger steak seasoned with Badia (suzigirl, it's almost empty!! I can't believe it, well really I can :) served with Marsala wine mushrooms sauteed in bacon fat. SO is home for the weekend and requested potatoes so he will also have duck fat roasted potatoes. I am hooked after my first foray into duck fat this week and couldn't resist the cheater tub of D'Aartagnan duck fat at Wegmans this afternoon. I have a few more duck breasts in the freezer to render more fat but this will come in handy and I'm sure I'll be pouring it on everything. I'm not the biggest fan of the taste of butter and I think this might be a good alternative for me for eggs in particular.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        It's an animal fat kind of night I guess. The bacon fat will be the real treat for me. I visited Mom Mom's apartment last week and after a quick walk through, the only thing I grabbed when I left was her jar of bacon grease on the counter. My family was thoroughly confused as to why in the world I wanted a jar of grease, but among the other things that Mom Mom and I shared was a true love of cooking and she would definitely not want it to go to waste so it will now join my bacon fat jar family.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I am sorry it has been so tough getting back in the world. I have missed you lately. Sorry that you are almost out of Badia. It can be a painful withdraw if you run out entirely. ;-)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It sounds like a perfect animal fat night. I couldn't agree with you more that the bacon fat needed to be saved. It needs to season something super special. Something Mom Mom would have made. Dollars for doughnuts it is the best pot of smothered green beans you ever make because it is bacon cooked how Mom Mom liked her bacon. Or something like that...greens, fried eggs, you name it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I agree, collards and black eyed peas are on the menu for Wednesday. I've never made them but everyone else in my family can't let a New Year's Day pass without either. Mom was actually upset that I wasn't also making cornbread, potato salad, etc. The bacon grease shall shine brightly to kick off 2014 with wishes for a great year!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I will be shuttling myself to H Mart for another bottle ASAP. It's the only place I can find it. I seem to remember that I spotted it at Wegmans but now I can't find it there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I've missed you and everyone here too, my meals just aren't exciting most days to post :) Don't worry, I've been keeping tabs on all of the tasty treats around here.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Collards and black eyed peas. Holy yummers. pencil me in, please. May Mom Mom's love guide you. I bet it will.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Come on over. I imagine there will be leftover rib roast as well which will be begging for someone to save it from the fridge. Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. I am in the midst of cooling off a loaf of bread I baked and boiling a dozen jumbo eggs to prepare deviled eggs for myself and a friend. Our dinner will be chicken breasts in marinara with parm....mashed potatoes.. steamed broccoli a wedge salad with creamy Italian dressing and the bread w/butter. The eggs will be consumed tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: MamasCooking

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yum! I love love deviled eggs. I try to limit myself to only eating them when someone else makes them to avoid consuming a dozen eggs at a time which would happen if I made them at home.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I find you can safely make and take them to a pot luck- you'll be lucky if you get one yourself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I know! Those things get hoovered up in no time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: sisterfunkhaus

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I made a veggie soup tonight as well. I went to my dad's for Christmas for a couple of days....We collaborated on a great meal. Step mom made a rib roast and a veggie lasagna for mains...and some yams and then lemon bars for dessert, just in case there wasn't enough food:-) DH and I contributed munchies for the pre-dinner champagne (crudités, hummus, cheese, crackers, marinated asparagus, olives, etc), green beans, rolls, and a pumpkin cheesecake. Stepmom's cousins provided the wine, as usual, and as usual they did not disappoint. A lovely German Reisling, a Napa pinot, and a desert wine. But I honestly can't remember the wineries....I think I indulged too much in the champagne to start! :-) Anyway, there were enough leftovers for another meal, so I brought home lasagna for Thursdays dinner and a few slices of the beef for my lunch today (DH doesn't eat meat..). Tonight's soup incorporated various leftover veggies from my fridge as well as the rest of the green beans, and the half can of pumpkin leftover from the pie. Oh, and a bottle of porter. I made it into a sort of pasta fagoli. I wasn't sure about the pumpkin, but it worked! That and the last of the sourdough rolls and lemon bars made for a great meal!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Well, the last of the ham just got finished for breakfast, along with scrambled eggs and soda bread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The last of the turkey will meet its fate at dinner. The classic (in this household) last dish - the bird, leftover stuffing, chips and peas.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              PS: That's Brit chips, not Yank chips.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              PPS: Actually it isnt the last of the turkey. There's half a turkey Bristol in the freezer, that'll be turned into a pie at some much later date.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              PPPS: "Bristol", I hear you think. Wassat - I hear you think. Well you have to understand the nuances of Cockney rhyming slang (often used through the UK). But what does "Bristol" rhyme with, I hear you think. Nuances, I remind you of. There's a second stage of the slang that doesnt use the full original wording. So, to use a foody one, someone might say they go up the "apples" to bed. The full expression would be "apples & pears" - slang for "stairs". So, "Bristol", is "Bristol City" to rhyme with titty, of course. And that's today's British culture lecture for y'all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              PPPPS: I may know a bit about Cockney rhyming slang but, please, don't confuse me with being someone from London. Different country there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                god i love having all youse Brits here on WFD.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I always love reading about Cockney rhyming slang!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love that phrase 'the last of the ham just got finished'.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm going to woman up to the beast tonight with Michael Symon's Ham and cauliflower Mac and Cheese and then we'll see. It was not a hugely successful ham- dry I thought but the peanut gallery said it was delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Oh, I like the sound of the Mac & cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Cauliflower cheese is a traditional British vegetarian dish - just cauli florets covered in the cheese sauce. The idea of combining that with the very American Mac & Cheese sounds great. And then you add ham! Very much Harters food - it'll be making an appearance in the not too distant future.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. I think I've lost my mind :) I ran to the store for garlic and came home with a giant bag of beef marrow bones, oxtails, leg of lamb and mussels. I am planning prime rib next week and for some reason while at the store figured it'd be fun and a good idea to try my hand at homemade beef stock for the jus for the prime rib, and I probably should also have a go at french onion soup since I'll have the stock. I needed a meat for New Year's Day and the little lamb called my name. Due to my random splurge in the name of the holidays, the fridge is packed so dinner tonight will be a clean out - egg white frittata with mushrooms, turkey breast, onions and broccoli.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      What a great post! I love random acts of food. Have a blast and please report back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Lost your mind in a good way! Oh, to have that energy again. Have fun!